Red Eye Gravy

Need a pick-me-up? Try this savory, coffee-based gravy recipe from Biscuit Head, one of Asheville, North Carolina's most beloved breakfast spots.

Biscuit Head, Asheville, NC

Biscuit Head, Asheville, NC

Photo by: Biscuit Head

Biscuit Head


  • 4 cups of your favorite coffee (old coffee is fine)
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 3 oz. chopped country ham
  • 1/2 cup onion, diced
  • 1 tsp. garlic, minced
  • 2 Tbsp. molasses


In a medium-sized cast iron skillet, combine ham and water. Turn on the heat to medium and let the mixture start to warm. Continue to cook ham over medium heat until all water has evaporated from the pan, in effect rendering the fat. Once the water is cooked out, let ham crisp slightly in its own fat. 

Add chopped onions and garlic to pan and sauté until it starts smelling amazing but not long enough to brown. Add molasses, stirring until it reaches a slight bubble. Add coffee, bring back to a simmer and it's ready to serve.

Chef's Note: Country ham has a very distinct flavor that is not easily substituted with any other product. Check with your local butcher or online for this product, but if you absolutely can't get it and need a substitution you can use prosciutto. Just don't tell your Southern friends! 

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